Museum Studies: Who Owns Art? Issues of Asian Art Collecting
Course No. ACD 480X Credits: 3.0
In the past five to ten years, issues of ownership and provenance of art works in museums have been hotly debated, with regard to both art world ethics and cultural sensibilities. Some art museums have returned holdings to their original countries and some have firmly maintained their legitimate ownership of objects. For example, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York recently returned to Italy the fifth-century B.C. Euphronios krater. The looting of art has existed in both the past and the present and has not been limited to European countries alone. It has also occurred in Asia—China, India, and other South Asian countries—where the looting has come from internal rather external motivations. How much do we know about such occurrences in Asia? This open-discussion seminar is aimed at exploring issues of ownership in the art and visual culture of Asian countries, and how they are represented and displayed in current European and American contexts. In order to understand this current issue, some historical background on art collecting and museum operations can not be omitted. Participation in readings and discussions are expected in the classroom. Visual Culture Emphasis course.
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